About Me

About Me

I am Cécile, a French woman, mother of two, living in Netherlands, a few minutes biking from beautiful Amsterdam. I grew up between France, Ivory Coast and Benin, and worked in corporate finance for most of my life in Morocco, Spain, France and Netherlands.

 


A few years ago my whole world collapsed – I was in a high conflict divorce with two young children, a newly diagnosed autoimmune condition for which I was told to just take the meds (my concern about said meds taking out 10 years of my lifespan in average had been brushed off by my then specialist),  my job was in jeopardy because of my health issues, and all the above meant I had serious doubts about my capacity to provide a roof for my children and myself. I was also obese (had been since my teens) and, not so surprisingly, in a depression.

I did spend some time in denial, thinking my old life would resume after a few months. Then I accepted the facts, sure there was not much I could do about it, and I would have to live the rest of my life “half living”‘.

Then, I rebelled. I couldn’t accept that there was nothing I could do to improve my life. I had so much anger when I was told to not even try….
Fast forward to now.

I became the CEO of my own health. Changing my lifestyle & my mental state allowed me to gain control over two autoimmune diseases.

I am slowly tapering meds and the future looks bright on that side. Obesity is a thing from the past. My job is  fulfilling & meaningful. Stressful events continue to happen, for sure, but they do not bring me down as they always did – I keep standing firmly grounded, bouncing, adjusting, finding new ways.


I am peaceful, happy, strong and resilient. I gathered a tremendous experience-based knowledge, completed with trainings, which I now use to help men and women to achieve their way forward – with autoimmune disease as well as heavy life events.

Looking forward to meeting you!

Cécile

On Social Media

With Clint Paddison

 


Meet the wonderful and inspiring Clint, a must see on TEDxBondUniversity (Video; 18 minutes). He talks about his experiences battling Rheumatoid Arthritis, and explains what has worked for him.
I had the pleasure to be a guest in three episodes of Clint Paddison’s podcast. Clint is Australian, he struggled for years with a very aggressive Rheumatoid Arthritis and when he achieved to be pain free, meds free, he decided to share his findings with anyone who would be interested. Working with him has been a break-through in my health journey.

Prednisone and Rheumatoid Arthritis

 

The pros and cons in 45 minutes

What you can expect in this podcast


While I consider RA drugs an absolute life savers for many of us, which gives us the room to heal while preserving our mobility, I have a different take on the long term usage of corticosteroids. Dealing with the side effects of those drugs is not easy, the challenge is to keep in mind the long term picture and find the balance regarding what is acceptable. We should never take anything for granted and be in full alert mode without letting it get in our head. With Prednisone I went to the deep understanding in my body and mind that it was dragging me down on all levels, mental and physical. Weaning it off after two years was an enormous challenge; it was hard to accept to take it slow but I am sure it was a big part in my success.

Why a change in diet alone is not enough

 

A lifestyle strategy in 17 minutes

What you can expect in this podcast


In this podcast, we discuss :

The enormous task at hand which requires more than just food adjustments

Other parts of an effective strategy that can be overlooked by the huge change in diet

The importance of physical exercise

The special case of Bikram Yoga

Interactions between diet and drugs

Plant-based supplements

Mental health & motivation; your inner voice

The right minsets in 24 minutes

What you can expect in this podcast

 

In this podcast we discuss the winning mindset:

Changing the inner voice that often holds us back

Strategies to prevent negative thoughts and mental loops

Managing stress and identifying its sources

Meditation for acceptance and freedom

Approaching doctors the right way and appreciating their role

Becoming the CEO of our mental health

With Wendy Walrabenstein

 


I had the pleasure to meet Wendy Walrabenstein in my health journey. She was the dietician I turned to when I decided to transition my little family to a plant-based way of eating. Little did I know I was about to meet a dedicated researcher! Of course, we ended up working together. This interview was recorded (2018) as an inspiration for people who want to improve their lifestyle, for example because they have arthritis. In particular, it is used for the program Plants for Joints. Reade, an Amsterdam based clinic specialized in the treatment of rheumatism, is currently investigating the effect of this lifestyle program on patients with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
Wendy has a series of video’s on het website where she gives tips and advice on dieting, some of them produced together with Libelle TV. Check out her series here.

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